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on the economy wednesday night. but foreign policy is something that's critically important given the current state of foreign policy where we have a leader now whose foreign policy has made us weak in the eye of the rest of the world whereas governor romney believe in peace through strength. >> all right. let's talk about the expectations here, karen. the game from both sides has kicked into high gear over the weekend. i want to remind everybody. take a listen. >> president obama's a very, he's a very gifted speaker. he's an experienced debater. he's done these kinds of debates before. this is mitt's first time on this kind of a stage. >> we'd expected all along governor romney will have a good night. he's prepared more than any other candidate in history. >> and i think for us to raise the expectations, he's got to do something spectacular. those things don't happen in debates anymore that there's a spectacular event or gaffe. they're too well rehearsed. >> in this week's debate president obama has a great deal to lose. romney's is the most difficult position. obama's is the most dangerous.
in these debates and go after the president, specifically on foreign policy. governor romney hit the president on the response to the consulate attack in libya on his weekly podcast. take a listen. >> we've seen a confused, slow, and inconsistent response to the terrorist attack in libya. a refusal to be frank with the american people about what happened, and a complete failure to explain the growing terrorist threat we face in the region. >> is that the winning line of attack there? >> well, certainly going after the president on what has been one of his strengths in recent years would be one way of going big. foreign policy doesn't tend to be one of the top issues for many voters, even after 9/11, so it won't necessarily help him on the economic front. so i don't know how much it would ultimately yield him, but he's been very tough on president obama on foreign policy, hearing him say, again, something along the lines of what you just plays wouldn't surprise me a bit. >> beth fouhy, thank you so much, and anne kornblut, always a pleasure, and so much so, we'll see you a little bit later this
today in virginia beach. and he went right at mr. romney on foreign policy and the wars. and he is -- he's right there when he says that we don't know what mr. romney would do if he became president. mr. romney has said recently and vaguely that he supports what president obama is doing in afghanistan in terms of there being a timeline for leaving but he has also said he was against a timeline for leaving in the past. so really who knows? he's not even trying. the closest we've gotten to any competing cogent republican position on the war is probably what we got from senator john mccain at the republican convention when he said that the afghanistan war just shouldn't end. he also thinks that the iraq war shouldn't have ended. so i'm not sure that it's a politically viable position. even if it is an internally cogent one from the senator. for this year's nominee, it's apparently just not going to happen. not unless he starts it now. 40 days out, mitt romney did get as close as he gets to talking about the issue today. in that he spoke before a group of veterans and talked about a concern
of the administration was to downplay the attack because they don't want any foreign policy -- nobody comes to a protest with rocket launchers so it had -- they are the markings of something more than a spontaneous protest than had gone awry. but i do think the white house is basically placing the burden of the white house on the intelligence agency and saying they were following what they were being told and they didn't really confirm that it was a terrorist attack until some days, even a week later. and i think the president, in his initial remarks at the white house did call it an act of terror, just, yeah, all the protests. >> okay. anne let's listen to a bit more here of the matter on mete the press. >> the president failed the level of the american people and called it a trift attack. because you had to be concerned about another terrorist attack in the middle east after al qaeda had been defeated. >> that's preposterous and really offensive. this presidential record on terrorism takes a back seat to no one. >> ann, is the white house at all concerned this may become an issue on the campaign trail
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